Ok so now that I’m good and fired up its time to really touch this subject.
So some of us watched with a sense of disbelief, others just had the "there go the flyers again" mind set when Richards bulldozed flower and the melee ensued. Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield were said to have made an appearance during this fracas in the forms of Chris Letang and Scott Hartnell. But this issue is bigger then the Flyers I think. This message sending issue is what the league has said they will "crack down" on. Good job there.
None of us are naive enough to believe that there hasn’t been times in seasons past, or won’t be times this season where the pens pull the same number. I think most of us hope not, but seriously there will be games where bad blood boils over and next thing you know you have the Hanson’s running around like goobers. Now the real problem isn’t that some fans support this with the mind set of "let’s make them pay for coming into town one way or the other". It’s the fact that there are still players on every roster that are on the roster for specifically this purpose. Why has the supposed "crack down" been ineffective, and why is it that blatant issues go with out suspension?
"If it bleeds it leads". That’s the philosophy that the NHL has taken in this mess as usual. The only time anything really happens disciplinary wise is when Ovechkin, Crosby, Malkin, or Datsyuk is injured. That’s why guys like Hartnell, Carcillo, Colton Orr, and so on are in high demand. More people come to the games to see the shenanigans then stay away from it. Remember when Todd Bertuzzi broke a guys neck when he decked him away from the play? That was a story for about 10 minutes. The NHL handed down their suspension and that was about it. Donald Brashear vs Marty McSorely, Tie Domi vs Ulf Samuelsson. The list goes on and on. So where is the straw that broke the camels back? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying eliminate fighting, I am saying lets make things 100% clear, after the whistle any kind of shenanigans get you a 2 minute minor, second time in a game you get a game misconduct. You wont be able to eliminate fighting, but the fact is continuing on this path will only drive fans from the seat now.
The coaches have got to get a handle on their players. That has to be reinforced from the top down. But there are a lot of old school coaches out there that love to make each opposing team pay every time they play. Guys like Jim Schoenfield, The Mullet, and Mike Keenan are no longer with any organizations’ and I say good riddance, Hockey is fast, its fancy, its intended to showcase the great talents. Guys like Simon Gange, Richards, Crosby, Malkin, Staal, Alex Ovechkin , Pavel Datsyuk, Bobby Ryan, Tavares, Getzlaf. The game has passed the likes of Carcillo, Orr, and their comrades, its time we do too.
And now a poll.